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Five Frugal Things | a bench cushion repair

1. I modified my piano bench cushion

After I moved last year, my piano bench was having a hinge issue.

glued piano bench repair

a previous repair!

It’s not the first time…this poor bench has been through the wringer. I bought it with my piano in 1997, and since then it has endured countless piano students, plus the abuse of my own four children.

So I took it for a ride over to my dad’s garage.

van loaded with furniture.

Note the strap location on the bench pad; that’ll be important later.

My dad replaced the small individual hinges with a single long hinge that runs the length of the bench. And he did some serious reinforcing.

glued piano bench.

Because the new hinge had no gaps, the cushion ties could no longer run underneath the lid from front to back.

bench cushion.

The cushion was sort of useless this way, so I decided to attempt a modification.

I cut all the ties off, leaving me with six.

bench ties.

I wanted them to run under the bench longways, so I sewed the first four together, two at a time.

But then I realized, oh, I’d better not sew the last two together, because I needed two more ties, not just one!

I poked through the jar (a repurposed candle jar) where I keep ribbons that I’ve saved, and I pulled out some black ones that I think came with a blanket I’d bought.

jar of ribbons.

(You know how blankets are often packaged with a wide ribbon holding the labels on? Click here to see what I mean. I usually save those ribbons!)

I cut the velcro parts off and then sewed two ribbons to the remaining two original bench straps.

velcro from ribbons.

Then I hand-sewed them all onto the cushion (it was too thick to use the machine.)

needle and thimble.

And I’m happy to say my fix works! My bench cushion is back in business.

black piano bench.

I love low-stakes projects like this; the cushion was no good as-is, so I had nothing to lose by trying to fix it.

black piano.

Click here to see another way I reused some ribbon I saved from a bedding package. It’s a serious throwback! Scroll toward the end of the post to see the ribbon part.

2. I got a bottle of Fray Check for my shorts

I have this pair of Old Navy shorts that was inexplicably fraying a LOT by one of the seams.

old navy shorts.

You’ve seen these shorts before when I showed you my Converse.

Kristen wearing a pair of blue Converse.

I usually roll them up, like so.

I thought I had some Fray Check, but it must be at my other house.

So, I popped into Jo-Ann’s, loaded up a 40% off coupon on my phone, and got a fresh bottle of Fray Check for a couple of dollars.

(You can see Fray Check on Amazon here, but you will get it cheaper by going to a craft store and using a 40% off coupon.)

I used it on the shorts, and now I should be good to go.

frayed denim.

3. I fixed my Vans again

Remember how I sewed up the side split last year?

Well, the fabric frayed and so my stitching had now come undone.

Sooo, I stitched it up again.

sewing vans.

And then I brushed on some Fray Check to keep my new repair job from getting destroyed again.

mended Vans.

I also brushed some Fray Check on a spot on the other shoe, to help prevent it from splitting in the future.

frayed vans.

I know these Vans are nearing the end of their useful life, but…I like to squeeze every bit of life possible out of my stuff. 😉

4. I got a pair of kitchen scissors for $5

Kohl’s sent me a $5/any purchase coupon for my birthday, so I popped in and picked up a pair of kitchen scissors.

They were originally $10, so my coupon brought them down to $5.

kitchen scissors.

I already had one pair for kitchen use, but it’s really nice to have two pairs; that way when one is dirty, you still have one available!

5. I…

pot of dishclothes.

  • used up some green onions in my breakfast potatoes

breakfast potatoes and eggs.

  • planted the green onion ends so that they will regrow more onions

green onion end.

Your turn! What frugal things have you been up to?

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Wednesday 26th of April 2023

I did not know Fray Check existed, not that it had so many uses. Will be checking that out soon. My frugal(ish) and fun things for this past week were carpooling with friends to an event, having a walk-to-dinner date with a friend, and using free street parking instead of paid parking (it was five minutes of extra exercise walking a bit farther).

Lindsay B

Wednesday 26th of April 2023

1. Attended a conference that provided breakfast and lunch. There were a lot of pastries and cookies left after both, and I snagged a few as treats for DH.

2. Added a discount-finding plug-in to my web browser from a credit card provider to earn a $10 gift card. I’m not sure the plug-in will be better than Rakuten, but I’ll give it a try and will likely uninstall it.

3. I was able to have a custom wrist brace adjusted for free. It was made almost a year ago and I needed to wear it again, but realized I’d be more likely to wear it if it fit better. I’m grateful I remembered that I could have it adjusted within the year.

4. I’ve had to buy some really expensive medications that aren’t covered by insurance. DH did some research into various pharmacies and we had the doctor send individual prescriptions to whichever pharmacy was cheapest. And he found a special discount via GoodRx for one of them… and when I picked it up, it was $10 cheaper than the amount we’d been quoted online.

5. We offered to bring snacks for church fellowship time, and I made homemade brownies and banana cake (banana bread, but in a cake pan) so we didn’t end up having to buy as much. We did buy some cheese curds and grapes as the “healthy” options.


Wednesday 26th of April 2023

Did I miss a post about you painting your $5 cabinet. Did you make a final decision on the paint color?


Wednesday 26th of April 2023

I did not. I'm still waffling! lol


Wednesday 26th of April 2023

I planted my green onion ends too! I will try that stinky washcloth boiling method.


Wednesday 26th of April 2023

Congratulations to Lisey!!! Graduating is a big deal and I hope you get to celebrate!

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